Rapeman: the hero we deserve
By: Rachel Edwards
My experiences with hentai are a mile long. So you might say that I was asking for this review. But jokes aside, I found the plot of rapeman to be a feel good black comedy for the ages. If there isn’t room for rapeman in your hearts, you can be assured that he will force his way in.
One can only assume that other reviewers are lacking both heart and a sense of humor. Who can blame them though. Rape is a very hard topic to write about, and people are bound so tightly to cultural norms that they have a hard time escaping.
That being said, let’s dive right in. From the moment we begin it is clear that this is satire. Rapeman is an anti-hero that is basically a hired hitman for rape. He is not attached to the politics of the situation, but trusts that his uncle will only take jobs that stand to help people. The problem that people have with it. is probably the idea that rape can solve problems.
Strangely enough the problems that rapeman solves are really problems that have been caused by society. The schoolgirl he rapes, is a girl raised by yakuza members. She predictably becomes a spoiled brat that will not recognize authority or take advice. Even the change that rape man provides isn’t helpful. She’s still in a family of yakuza and that will never end well. She could not recognize her parent’s authority or take their advice, because she was never raised to be that way. The closest she will ever come to resolution is to just accept the situation.
The second target was a lady thief by the name of red cat. It’s obvious from the beginning that she is a play on catwoman. A hit is placed on her to turn away from a life of crime. This rape scene and every other rape scene is over the top. He throws his handcuffs like a batarang and fucks her while hanging off the side of a building. In the end she accepts that this road is not the best for her.
Throughout rape is never portrayed as being a desirable act or even as the means of solving a problem. Despite the strangeness of it all, it is pointing out very real problems in society. These days people will do almost anything for money. Why not a rape man? Japan is a culture of shame, and despite the fact that the resolution of each story results in the women taking on stereotypical gender roles, it never says that this is okay. Instead it gets you to ask why these women were acting out in the first place.
Japan has very rigid gender roles and expectations. As a result men and women are actively rebelling against it. It takes shaming for them to conform and fall in line. The incidence of rape in Japan is quite low and because of this, the idea of a rapist is less about the people you know, and more about some boogeyman hiding in the bushes.
Leave it to Americans to take things seriously. The very concept of rapeman raises societal questions that the japanese rarely discuss and with a heavily censored media, a hentai is about as close as you get to genuine political commentary. In short Rapeman is the hero that we don’t want, but he’s the hero we deserve. Solving problems with penetration.
By: Alison Tieman
Geraldine is a cartoon short about Gerald who wakes up one day as the woman Geraldine. It’s somewhat cliched in its depiction of Gerald’s transition but does have interesting things to say about female privilege. Geraldine is suddenly seen as an object of concern by men who give her gifts, rides home and compassion. On the flip side Geraldine is also subject to sexual harassment leading to the cliched scene of a man smacking her ass and Geraldine flipping out and head butting him unconscious.
Which leads me to one of my main criticisms. Geraldine is angry; way, way, way too angry to be believable as a former man.
Men don’t get away with the level of anger Geraldine indulges in on a regular basis and I imagine if Gerald would submissively accept sexual harassment from women—like most men do—most likely he would also submissively accept it from men as a woman.
Blurred Lines a review
By: Jess Kay
Feminists at major publications from Jezebel to Salon have made their feelings in regards to Robin Thicke and his pop sensation “Blurred Lines” abundantly clear: They believe it is highly offensive, the lyrics are “rapey,” and the video objectifies women. Essentially, the song is a rape anthem, and Thicke is a rape apologist. Now, we could take their word on this, or we could actually look at what they are referring to and determine for ourselves if this is the case. Let’s do that, shall we?
Let’s start with the lyrics. Writers at salon claim that “the song is about “liberating” a good girl by showing her that she actually wants “crazy wild sex” that she isn’t asking for… [as] Thicke keeps repeating “I know you want it.” An actual review of the lyrics paints an entirely different picture.
For starters, Thicke sings “OK now he was close, tried to domesticate you; But you’re an animal, baby, it’s in your nature; Just let me liberate you; You don’t need no papers; That man is not your maker.” That sounds to me like Thicke outright rejects strict and stifling gender roles and those that try to impose them on others.
Not partcularly rapey, or even misoginistic. Let’s look some more. “But you’re a good girl; The way you grab me; Must wanna get nasty; Go ahead, get at me.” This would appear that the person initiating this sexual encounter – WITHOUT asking for consent, mind you – is the woman he is singing to, as she “grabbed him” first. But after doing so, it is Thicke who gives clear and enthusiastic consent when he says “go ahead, get at me.”
He also repeatedly states that he “hates these blurred lines.” This suggests that he dislikes the idea of not having clear and concise consent, which implies an actual desire for clear consent and condemnation of rape.
Moving on to the supposedly objectifying video, feminists rage over scantily clad women dancing around men, claiming it is only men that are worthy of clothing. There are several implications in this critique, all of which being misogynistic in nature.
The assumption that these women are being objectified and treated poorly rather than making the conscious decision to perform in this manner and exploit their sexuality for financial gain denies their agency to make their own informed decisions.
It also reinforces the double standard of feminists claiming to advocate for women’s right to choose, but condemning women who choose to engage in behavior that does not suit the feminist agenda. Finally, it displays an astounding level of hypocrisy when feminists encourage engagement in slut walks, trying to reclaim the word “slut” by marching around scantily clad and claiming empowerment, but they condemn women who march around scantily clad of their own free will for monetary gain.